You are here:

General Writing and Grammar Help/Make Oxford - make it to Oxford

Advertisement


Question
Dear Ted:

Are the following pairs of sentences correct? If they are all possible, do they mean the same thing? If so, which would you use or do you think are more commonly used?  

Pair 1:

1) I'm sorry I couldn't make your party last night.   

2) I'm sorry I couldn't make to your party last night.

Pair 2:

1) Do you think we'll make Oxford by midday?

2) Do you think we'll make it to Oxford by midday?

Pair 3:

1) I'm afraid I won't be able to make your party next week.

2) I'm afraid I won't be able to make it to your party next week.

Many, many thanks for your kind help.

Paolo

Answer
Dear Paolo:

My right eye is very sore, and my vision is blurred.  I hope I don't make too many mistakes in my response.

****

Are the following pairs of sentences correct? If they are all possible, do they mean the same thing? If so, which would you use or do you think are more commonly used?  

Pair 1:

1) I'm sorry I couldn't make your party last night.   

2) I'm sorry I couldn't make to your party last night.

*** #1 is correct.  #2 is wrong because of the wording "make to your party."  You need to add the word "it."  I'm sorry that I couldn't make IT to your party last night.

"Make IT to your party" is a colloquial way of saying what you said in sentence #1.

Pair 2:

1) Do you think we'll make Oxford by midday?

2) Do you think we'll make it to Oxford by midday?

*** I prefer #2, but both of them are used.  It's like the captain of the Titanic saying, "At the record-breaking speed we are sailing, unless we hit some kind of problem, we should make landfall by tomorrow night."  If I remember correctly, the British quite frequently drop the word "it."

Pair 3:

1) I'm afraid I won't be able to make your party next week.

2) I'm afraid I won't be able to make it to your party next week.

*** Either can be used.  They have identical meanings.

*** Consider this scenario:

A:  Will you guys be attending my party next week?
B:  I'm afraid I won't be able to MAKE IT.
C:  I'm sorry, but I cannot come to your party.

There are various ways of expressing this idea.

Ted

General Writing and Grammar Help

All Answers


Answers by Expert:


Ask Experts

Volunteer


Ted Nesbitt

Expertise

I am the bibliographic instruction and reference librarian at a public college. Some members of the English department recommend me to their students. I offer assistance in grammar, punctuation, sentence structure, and paragraph development. My master`s thesis concerns William Faulkner`s tragic novels. I formerly taught advanced placement English at two schools in the Philadelphia area.

Experience

I have been one of the highest-ranked volunteers in this category for more than a decade.

Education/Credentials
B. A. and M. A in English; MSIS in Library & Information Sciences; graduate study in philosophy

©2016 About.com. All rights reserved.